Sufganiyot is a traditional Israeli Hanukka jelly-filled doughnuts that are made with a pillowy soft dough, fried and stuffed with strawberry jelly, and topped with plenty of powder sugar.
What do sufganiyot taste like?
Sufganiyot are made with a dough that is a cross between a beignet and classic jelly donuts. Sufganiyot are filled with usually strawberry jelly and topped with a LOT of powder sugar. Sufganiyot taste absolutely incredible when eating fresh, but this sufganiyot recipe keeps delicious and fluffy for 2 days!
If you like this sufganiyot recipe, you should try our other Israeli recipes: chocolate babka, moist honey cake, and our date roll cookies.
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What are sufganiyot?
Sufganiyot are a delicious Jewish and Israeli dessert that is eaten in Hanukkah in Israel and around the world. These traditional jelly-filled doughnuts are fried in oil which symbolizes the miracle of oil lamps that burned for eight nights instead of one in the Hanukkah story.
Sufganiyot are usually filled with jelly, but in Israel, during Channukah, there are many twists for the classic sufganiyot. It is popular to see sufganiyot that are filled with Nutella, dulce de Leche, vanilla cream, chocolate crunch, and much more!
Flour– we use all-purpose flour for this recipe. Bread flour will work great as well for this recipe.
Active dry yeast– active dry yeast works best for this recipe.
Granulated sugar– granulated sugar works best for this recipe, but caster sugar can work as well.
Vegetable oil- use either vegetable oil or canola oil for this recipe. You will need oil for the dough and for frying the dough.
Kosher salt– use kosher salt for this recipe.
Water– use room temperature water.
Eggs- you will need three large eggs, make sure that your eggs are at room temperature.
Vanilla extract- for extra flavor.
Brandy or vodka- classic sufganiyot are made with 1 tbsp of either brandy or vodka. This step is optional, if you don't have brandy or vodka laying around, you can simply skip this step.
How to make sufganiyot:
In a bowl of a stand mixer, add the flour, dry yeast, and sugar. Mix with a spoon until combined. Add the salt, and mix until combined.
Add the and room temperature water, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, brandy or vodka, and the eggs, and start mixing on low until the dough forms.
Increase the speed to medium and mix for at least 8 minutes or until the dough is smooth and silky.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise at room temperature for 1-2 hours or until it’s doubled in size (or even tripled in size).
Punch down the dough down and transfer it to a clean floured surface. Sprinkle flour on the dough and roll it into a 1/4 inch rectangle, making sure that the bottom of the donuts doesn't stick to the surface.
Using a 2-inch cookie cutter, stamp out as many rounds as you can. Reuse the leftover dough and make more dough rounds.
Transfer the dough rounds to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, cover with a clean towel and let the dough rise until its doubles in size or at least for 30 minutes.
Heat canola oil in a dutch oven, saucepan, or frying pan and allow it to get to about 180c (350f). Gently place a donut round in the hot oil (using your hand or a spatula) and fry in small batches for about 2 minutes on each side.
Remove the fried donuts to paper towels to drain any excess oil. Let the donuts cool for a few minutes or until they are cool enough to hold.
Using a sharp knife, make a hole on the side of the donut, and create a pocket inside the donut (as seen in the video). Pipe jam with a pastry bag and a round tip in each donut. Sprinkle each donut with a generous amount of powder sugar, and serve!
Why this recipe works:
- Made with super simple ingredients.
- Tastes a million times better than a store-bought donut.
- Easy to make.
- Cheap to make.
- Fluffy and melt in your mouth delicious.
Tips for this recipe:
- Mesure you flour correctly! When measuring your flour, avoid scooping it with a measuring cup. Instead, stir the flour with a spoon to create as many air pockets as possible, and spoon it into your measuring cup. Finally, level it with a back of a knife.
- Make sure that your yeast isn’t expired. You can check if your yeast is expired by mixing a tsp of dry yeast with 1/4 cup of room temperature water, wait 10 minutes, and if the yeast has bubbles in it and it puffed a bit, your yeast is alive and good, if there are no bubbles in your yeast mixture, your yeast is probably expired.
- Be patient! Let the dough rise at least until it doubles its size. The more the dough rises, the more fluffy the sufganiyot will be.
- Use bread flour! We like to use either all-purpose flour or bread flour for making bread. Bread flour contains more gluten, which makes the dough more stretchy and easy to work with.
- Make sure that your ingredients are fresh! Make sure that your flour and yeast are fresh and not expired. This step ensures that you will have a great dough to work with.
- Don’t overcrowd the pan when frying the sufganiyot, this step ensures that your sufganiyot cook well.
- Remove the fried sufganiyot to paper towels to drain any excess oil.
- Use room temperature ingredients.
- Make sure that your jelly is thick, and doesn't have a lot of lumps in it. This step ensures that there will be no jelly pieces clogging the piping tip while filling the donuts.
- Make these your own! If you don't like jelly, simply fill the donuts with whatever filling that you'd like! Nutella, vanilla pastry cream, dulce de leche, etc.
Frequently asked questions:
How long will the sufganiyot last?
The sufganiyot will last for about 2 days at room temperature, stored in an airtight container. Or freeze up to 3 months.
Can I bake these in the oven?
Yes, simply preheat an oven to 180c (350f), and bake for about 5 minutes or until the donuts are slightly golden brown.
Can I freeze these sufganiyot?
Yes, after baking them, let them cool completely and freeze them in an airtight container for up to 3 months. When ready to use, defrost at room temperature for 30 minutes and reheat in a toaster oven for 2-3 minutes.
How many sufganiyot does this recipe make?
This recipe makes about 12 sufganiyot, depends on the size. You can make them smaller or bigger.
Can I use an air fryer to cook these sufganiyot?
Yes, you can air fry these sufganiyot. Simply grease the basket of the air fryer generously with canola oil or vegetable oil. Add 4 dough rounds to the basket of the air fryer and brush the donuts with butter or oil. Fry at 180c (350f) for about 5 minutes flipping halfway through.
How to serve sufganiyot?
Classic sufganiyot are served with jelly filling and topped with powder sugar. For the ones who don't like jelly, there are a few filling options:
Fill the sufganiyot with wither:
Roll the sufganiyot with:
- Dulce de leche.
- Chocolate spread.
- Vanilla custard.
- Vanilla or chocolate pudding.
Or switch out the jelly flavor! You can fill these donuts with strawberry jelly, blueberry jelly, apple jelly, peach jelly, raspberry jelly, or any of your favorite homemade jelly!
- Powder sugar.
- Granulated sugar.
- Cinnamon sugar.
- Leave plain.
More classic desserts to try:
Classic cheesecake- This classic cheesecake is perfect, New York-style, smooth, extra creamy, bakes with no water bath with no cracks! We found the perfect classic cheesecake recipe that you will keep in your recipe book for life.
Chocolate cake- This is the best ever chocolate cake ever. I’ve been searching for the best one bowl chocolate cake recipe for so long and found it and can’t wait to share it with you!
Chocolate cupcakes- These chocolate cupcakes are moist, fluffy, full of rich chocolate flavor, and comes together in one bowl. These chocolate cupcakes taste amazing with our chocolate cream cheese frosting and our chocolate buttercream frosting.
Chocolate babka- This recipe is made by making a decedent brioche-like bread and filling it with rich chocolate filling made with dark chocolate, butter, powder sugar, and cocoa powder, topped with a simple sugar syrup that brings all the flavors together.
Date roll cookies- These are made with buttery shortcrust pastry, filled with date paste, cinnamon, and chopped walnuts, topped with powder sugar that makes these cookies irresistible. These cookies are addictive and melt in your mouth delicious.
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